Energetic Athletes with Big Hearts – Is the American Pit Bull Right For You?

If you are considering getting an American Pit Bull there are several questions that need to be considered.

  1. Do you have time to devote to properly training these dogs and extra money for obedience classes?
  2. If your pet is not welcome in a residential area would you look elsewhere for a place to live?
  3. Can you spend twelve or more years of your life looking after an adorable puppy that is going to grow up to be rather large?
  4. Do you want to play? Preferably a lot, such as every single day of the week and extra on the weekends?

If you can answer yes to all previous questions then this breed might be right for you. There are a great many hurdles Pit Bull owners face on a regular basis and these dogs are certainly not for everyone, but they can nonetheless be great companions.

America Pit Bulls can best be summed up in the following three words:

  • Energetic
  • Friendly
  • Hardworking

Lets jump into each characteristics in a little more detail after the break:


The American Pit Bull generally needs at least an hour of vigorous exercise every single day and a firm grip must be maintained on their leash to keep them from getting away.

They make excellent jogging companions and are well-suited to athletic owners. you should most definitely not expect your average American Pit Bulls to be a couch potato.



Despite their bad reputation as aggressive towards people, the American Kennel Club breed standard states this is not to be the case in show quality dogs. In fact, most Pit Bulls are incredibly friendly where human beings are concerned.

These dogs don’t seem to be aware that they aren’t small enough to be lap dogs. This can easily lead to misunderstandings when Pit Bulls are giant puppies that just want to play.

Their friendliness isn’t a new characteristic. During historical periods when they were fighting other breeds, these dogs would have to be handled by both their owner and their opponent’s owner before the match.

Any animal that snapped at a person could end up paying for their bad behavior with their life, so this characteristic was largely eliminated around that time. There are also a number of lines that were never used as fighting dogs and have been companions for many decades.



American Pit Bulls are still used as service dogs in a variety of different fields. Most the UKC sports champions that have achieved titles in a number of disciplines and qualify for their so-called “superdog” status are Pit Bulls.


The Downside of Owning American Pit Bulls

Due to their fighting past and several controversial studies done on vicious dogs in recent decades, this breed unfortunately has a poor reputation. For example if you want a big dog that everyone will welcome with open arms, you are better off with a Labrador.

Finding housing can be difficult with a Pit Bull in tow and some cities have banned the breed altogether.

We mentioned that the Pitt Bull needs a lot of exercise, well what if they don’t get it? Believe us, they will proceed to chew up single thing they can get their greedy little paws on, and then just for fun dig enormous holes in the yard. Pit Bulls also have a tendency to be very vocal. As a result, these dogs are not very well suited to apartment life.

Pit Bulls are generally incompatible with cats and other small animals, though there are a number of exceptions to the rule. Members of this breed may also exhibit aggressive behavior towards other dogs.

Owners with other pets already living in their households may therefore want to consider another breed or start with a puppy. Pit Bulls that have been properly socialized from their youth are not as likely to display dog aggression as fully grown dogs.



For mature individuals that have both the time to train them well and large fenced in areas for them to play in, American Pit Bulls can be great pets. However, these dogs are one variety that should not be purchased on a whim.

Prospective pet owners must carefully consider the pros and cons of this breed before making an informed decision about acquiring one.

Information Sources: Pit Bulls for Dummies, Vetstreet, Dog Breed Info Center, AKC, UKC, Wikipedia, Animal Planet, previous materials, American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, article on Caser Milan’s website by Jon Bastian, Web MD,  owner of a Pit Bull puppy


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